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Will Warriors go for the kill as 4-point dogs at Rockets in game 3?

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The Warriors are the underdogs as the series shifts to Houston for game three on Saturday.

Houston Rockets v Golden State Warriors - Game Two
Draymond Green continues to fill up the stat sheet in this series.
Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images

The Golden State Warriors took care of business at home and have a chance to take a commanding lead in the series if they can defy expectations with no let-up and get a win in game three at the Houston Rockets.

Here we discuss the odds and analysis from a betting perspective.

When: Saturday May 4th, 2019 at 5:30pm PST

Where: Toyota Center, Houston, Texas

TV: ABC

Line: Rockets -4, o/u 221.5

Injuries: James Harden (eye) is probable and Terrence Jones (illness) is out for the Rockets.

DeMarcus Cousins (quadricep) and Damian Jones (pectoral) are out for the Warriors.

Houston Rockets

Maybe if James Harden and the Rockets spent less time writhing on the floor in a dramatic show or auditing game footage from last season to prove that they are victims of a larger conspiracy and more time figuring out how to score on the Warriors’ defense, they wouldn’t be in the position of being down two games to nothing.

The Rockets are led by James Harden with 29.0 points and 7.1 assists per game, Clint Capela with 9.9 rebounds and 1.6 blocks per game and Chris Paul with 2.9 steals per game in the playoffs so far.

Houston is 44-42-1 against the spread (ATS), 37-46-6 to the over/under, 22-16-2 ATS as a home favorite, 14-16-1 ATS after a loss, 11-8 ATS with 2-3 days off, 7-10-2 to the over/under with 2-3 days off, 14-16-1 to the over/under after a loss and 18-19-3 to the over/under as a home favorite this season.

The Rockets have an offensive rating of 109.1, defensive rating of 103.8, pace factor of 97.5 and are 4-3 ATS and 1-5-1 to the over/under in the playoffs.

Golden State Warriors

Golden State once again relied on sustained defensive intensity, clutch shooting from Kevin Durant and all-around dominant play from Draymond Green to beat the Rockets in consecutive games for the first time this season.

The Warriors are led by Kevin Durant with 34.3 points and 1.4 steals per game and Draymond Green with 8.5 rebounds, 7.9 assists and 1.5 blocks per game in these playoffs.

The Dubs are 39-50-1 ATS, 43-47 to the over/under, 26-32 ATS after a win, 4-2 ATS as an away underdog, 12-11 ATS with 2-3 days rest, 24-20 to the over/under as the away team, 12-11 to the over/under on 2-3 days rest, 1-5 to the over/under as an away underdog and 33-29 to the over/under after a win this season.

Golden State has an offensive rating of 119.8, defensive rating of 111.3, pace factor of 100.8, and are 4-4 ATS, 5-3 to the over/under in the playoffs so far.

Analysis

For most of the season, the Warriors have been underwhelming at home and have been owned by the Rockets.

So as much as it’s possible for a defending champion to be playing with house money, the Warriors are in control of this series with breathing room to spare, which is usually when we expect this season’s Dubs squad to rest on their laurels, take their foot off the gas and let the opponent back into the series, right?

But if there is any characteristic about this year’s Warriors team that we’ve observed over the course of the season, it’s the tendency to perform in an unexpected manner.

When they are expected to win big at home, they might instead lose big at home. Similarly, Golden State has its best ATS record this season when they are expected to lose on the road and have generally played better away than at home.

Now that the series is shifting to Houston with the Rockets being down two games, many are expecting the big bounce back game for James Harden and his squad in game three, which is precisely when the unexpected might occur.

Just when we might be expecting a letdown from the Dubs is when the Warriors might surprise everyone by going for the kill.

The Rockets have done themselves no favors by making a big stink about being treated unfairly, shifting public sentiment, possibly adding fuel to Golden State’s fire to vanquish Houston as soon as possible, putting to rest any ambiguity borne out of the Warriors losing three of four to the Rockets in the regular season.

Each of the first two games has been decided by six points or less, dictated by deliberate pace and defensive intensity, and we expect the Warriors to want to prove a point in this series by continuing their championship-caliber defensive play.

If the Dubs can sustain their strong defensive attitude, we don’t envision the Rockets generating substantial offense outside of isolation plays for James Harden or hail Mary threes from Eric Gordon and will take the four points on the road with the champs.

Poll

What is your best bet for Warriors at Rockets in game 3 on 5/4/19?

This poll is closed

  • 70%
    Warriors +4
    (426 votes)
  • 9%
    Rockets -4
    (57 votes)
  • 12%
    Over 221.5
    (76 votes)
  • 7%
    Under 221.5
    (48 votes)
607 votes total Vote Now